Panel issues report on Kan. courts budget woes

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- A special panel appointed by Chief Justice Lawton Nuss has issued its report offering suggestions for solving budget shortfalls in the Kansas court system.

The 72-page report was released Friday. It recommends that the judicial branch consider delaying the filling of personnel vacancies, eliminating some court services employees and furloughing staff to save resources.

Nuss asked a 10-member panel led by Appeals Judge Karen Arnold-Burger to find ways to close a projected $8.25 million shortfall in the judicial budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1, 2014.

Legislators and Republican Gov. Sam Brownback have promised to find necessary revenues to prevent closing courthouses and furloughing staff.

Arnold-Burger said the recommendations were made to minimize the impact on residents.